Ten Years Later…..

This weekend I think everyone is going to be contemplating where they were ten years ago, who they were, and how they were.  I know I’ve been thinking about it. For weeks, actually. It’s been an interesting decade. If I had imagined my life ten years ago (which, honestly, I didn’t do in more than abstract terms- who does when they’re 21?), I wouldn’t have guessed anything about my life as it is now except that I’m married. I had a vague expectation at the time that I would get married, but made no plans beyond the general idea of it.

Taking stock:

Ten years ago, I had just moved to Boston for a semester at a small state college called Bridgewater State University. I had just turned 21, driven up from Georgia (with my Dad taking the trip with me), and left behind UGA, my first love, and the life I knew, just to try something new. I think I was a political science major at this point, the major I ended up graduating with. I had no fear or worries about moving so far away, because it didn’t occur to me to worry about it. In my head, I knew how to take care of myself and I would handle whatever I had to handle as it came my way. I’m sure my parents were nervous, but not half as nervous as they would be less than two years later when I moved to England on my own, to work and travel around Europe.

Ten years ago, if you’d asked me what I wanted to do, I couldn’t have told you. I had no clear purpose in my life yet, nor did I feel anything more than a mild anxiety to decide. In my mind, a college degree of any kind meant that I could find a job that would allow me to support myself. There was no ladder I was looking to climb (in any industry) and no solid goal that I was shooting for. I was almost totally different mentally than I am today.

Ten years ago, I had the same haircut, an eyebrow ring, and was the exact same height I am now. I hated the taste of alcohol. I could still watch horror movies. I had just read the latest Harry Potter book (which was, like, the 3rd one) and my sense of personal style was somewhat unrefined. I’d never cooked a meal more complicated than baked chicken and I still listened to boy bands occasionally. Though I refuse to confirm which one. I had little money and worked several jobs to make ends meet. $30 was a lot of money back then, and Target wasn’t yet the megalith it is today, so buying cheap clothing was difficult. I’d never done a swing out.

Fastforward to now:

Regarding the significance of today for the nation: I can’t watch any dramatization of 9/11. Period. It’s still too much. Yet I can’t conceive of a world without 9/11. I can’t picture where our country would be without two unnecessary wars (and the 3rd ones necessity is debatable) a crushing Recession, or a bloated and vicious political culture based on fear, denial, and theatrics. It’s just so hard to wrap my brain around how the other path would have been.

Most of the people I knew (that are not dancers) have multiple children and are at a fundamentally different place in their lives than I am. I am currently quite content to travel and dance as much as I’m able. Eventually that will change, starting with getting a dog. I’ve got a job I like, a home I’m proud of, a husband I love, roommates I adore, friends who accept me, a car that is reliable, a hobby that challenges and thrills me, and am in good health. Life is good.

The past ten years has seen a lot of change, and it’s fascinating to take it all in. I really can’t think of anything to add right now, so I’ll leave it there since I’m not feeling particularly contemplative anymore.


How to get in trouble in NYC

So I flew in to NYC tonight on my annual pilgrimage to NYC for culture, fun and (I won’t lie) a good bit of drinking and people watching. It’s a sport. And, starting off my trip on a more interesting foot, I promptly took the wrong train and ended up in the Bronx at 10:30 at night.

I was supposed to be on the “A” Train. Apparently I got on the “D” Train. That’s what happens when they come on the same track and I’m too tired to pay attention. Now, I only know I’ve gotten on the wrong train when I exit the station and call my friend Kat (who I’m in town to visit, and who knows NYC very well) and tell her the streets where I’m near and she says- knowing her town quite well- that she has no clue where I am. Upon discovering that I have inadvertently shipped myself into the Bronx, Kat oh-so-casually advises me to get a cab. A bit too casually. I take this as a subtle hint that I need to get the hell out of there, and hailed a cab.

A very nice silver cab swept me up and the driver, whose name I can’t spell but who is from the Dominican Republic and is an enthusiastic Yankees fan, took me back over to Manhattan and to relative safety. In retrospect, I have to say that the Bronx were not that scary at all. Just quiet.

So now I’m safety nestled in my friends apartment with a steady WI-fi connection, two cats, two other humans, and my own bed for the weekend. Life is good.

One cat decided to welcome me by testing out  my suitcase as a resting place:

The other cat is busy licking himself (like you do) and ignoring me. All in all, it’s pretty typical cat behavior. I feel very at easy.

Welcome to NYC!

Fall is here!

I’ve never in my life seen Fall come as quickly or as definitively as it appears to have started this year. It’s like the weather looked at the calendar and said,” Eh, well, I did sort of start summer in May….might as well just start Fall when the humans want to schedule it.”

Mother Nature being so exact makes me happy and nervous. Happy for highs in the 70’s and nervous for the hurricane that just hit Vermont. It’s like Ma Nature is off her pills. Is someone following up on that? Someone very smart in the ways of weather? Cause if we need to soothe Her, I’ll do a dance or a chant or something. I love me some Fall leaves, but normally I dislike drastic shifts like this.

The onset of Fall coincided, completely by coincidence, with the arrival of a temporary house guest at Howellville.

Meet Evian:

our little mute lion

our little mute lion

Evian, a partially shaved pomeranian the size of a loaf of bread, is staying with us for two weeks while her owners are out of town.  She doesn’t bark and she makes tiny poops, so she’s okay with me. Plus, we don’t have to worry about her tearing anything up because she can’t reach anything! Seriously, I have paperclips that are as long as this dog’s legs. She’s precious. She can also hear someone moving in the kitchen from any part of the house. Go figure. I’m in love again.

House guest aside, I leave tomorrow to go to NYC for the weekend. I’m visiting a college friend who’s doing her PhD up there. This is the second time in three years that I’ve accidentally scheduled my fall visit to coincide with Sept. 11th. Yea.  This year is going to be nuts, and we’ve decided that we may just stay at home that day, rather than try to get anywhere. They had specials on all weekend about 9/11, and watching the footage again is so different from the last time. I think it bothers me that it’s not shocking anymore. I wanted that to be shocking forever. I don’t want to get numb to that particular story. Ah, life.

I’ll be reporting my adventures from NYC with photos and colorful descriptions of the natives. I LOVE people watching/fashion watching in NYC. It’s a visual feast.

Until the next update then!